Catalyzing Race Revolution: The Black Panthers and the Brown Berets

Thursday, Oct 10, 2013 - Thursday, Oct 10, 2013 | 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

691 Barrows Hall

Catalyzing Race Revolution: The Black Panthers and the Brown Berets
Presenters share findings from their recent publications on 1960s revolutionary US social movements for racial justice.

Black against Empire: The History and Politics of the Black Panther Party
Prof. Waldo Martin, History

Black against Empire is the first comprehensive overview and analysis of the history and politics of the Black Panther Party. The authors analyze key political questions, such as why so many young black people across the country risked their lives for the revolution, why the Party grew most rapidly during the height of repression, and why allies abandoned the Party at its peak of influence. Bold, engrossing, and richly detailed, this book cuts through the mythology and obfuscation, revealing the political dynamics that drove the explosive growth of this revolutionary movement, and its disastrous unraveling. Informed by twelve years of meticulous archival research, as well as familiarity with most of the former Party leadership and many rank-and-file members, this book is the definitive history of one of the greatest challenges ever posed to American state power.

Sancho’s Journal: Exploring the Political Edge with the Brown Berets
Prof. David Montejano, Ethnic Studies

How do people acquire political consciousness, and how does that consciousness transform their behavior? Sancho’s Journal presents a rich ethnography of daily life among the “batos locos” (crazy guys) as they joined the Brown Berets and became associated with the greater Chicano movement in the 1970s. Montejano describes the motivations that brought young men into the group and shows how they learned to link their individual troubles with the larger issues of social inequality and discrimination that the movement sought to redress. He also recounts his own journey as a scholar who came to realize that, before he could tell this street-level story, he had to understand the larger history of Mexican Americans and their struggle for a place in U.S. society. Sancho’s Journal completes that epic story.

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